Cllr Ian Hudspeth, Chairman of the LGA’s Community Wellbeing Board, responds to the announcement that five councils are to become Childhood Obesity Trailblazers, receiving new funding and support over the next three years.
“Childhood obesity remains one the most serious challenges facing local authorities, who have responsibility for public health, and for society more widely.
“These trailblazer councils have been chosen to help develop, deliver, review and expand their innovative plans to tackle this epidemic at a local level, which can then be shared with their peers more widely.
“In particular, it is crucial that we find a way to address the inequality which currently exists when it comes to childhood obesity. Children from the most deprived areas are more than twice as likely to be obese and more than four times as likely to be severely obese than children from the least deprived areas.
“This three-year trailblazer programme, managed by the LGA and funded by the Department of Health and Social Care with support from Public Health England, has seen applications from 102 councils across the country, all of whom have been willing to try and find new ways of dealing with child obesity and making a real difference in their communities.”
- The five shortlisted councils are: Bradford, Blackburn with Darwen, Nottinghamshire, Lewisham and Birmingham councils who will each be awarded £100,000 worth of funding and support per year to bring their plans to life. This extra funding will give each council the ability to test and refine their innovative ideas and methods. The results of each will then be used to share learning and best practice to encourage greater action on a wider scale.
- In addition to managing the trailblazer programme, the LGA is committed to sharing good practice from across the sector. The joint LGA/ADPH conference Healthy weight, healthy futures: making childhood obesity everybody’s business will take place on Wednesday 17 July.